Ventura County, California Genealogy

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Revision as of 00:28, 19 July 2014

United States go to California go to Ventura County

Guide to Ventura County California genealogy. Birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, and military records.

Hand and keyboard.jpg California
Online Records

Ventura County, California
Map of California highlighting Ventura County
Location in the state of California
Map of the U.S. highlighting California
Location of California in the U.S.
Founded March 22, 1872
County Seat Ventura
Address Ventura County Courthouse
800 S Victoria Avenue
Ventura, CA 93009
Phone: 805.654.2267
Ventura County Website


County Courthouse

County Clerk Recorder has birth, marriage and
death from 1873 and land records from 1850
Clerk Superior Court has divorce, probate
and court records from 1873  Some land went
to Kern & Los Angeles Counties in boundary change[1]

Historical Facts 

Mission San Buenaventura, one of the original 21 Roman Catholic missions in Alta California was founded in what is now downtown Ventura city in 1782 although it had a long rocky history including fires, earthquakes, tsunami and pirates, among other difficulties. The mission fathers kept the original vital records.

The costal plains and inland valleys are mostly devoted to agriculture even today but the costal mountains also cover a considerable part of the county. El Camino Real, the original roadway connecting the early missions, crosses the county. In the late 1800s the railroads came and in the 1900s US-101 followed essentially the Camino Real route heading north to Santa Barbara. Settlements mainly grew up along these routes.

Wikipedia has more about this subject: Ventura County, California

Parent County

22 March 1872: Ventura County was created from Santa Barbara County. County seat: Ventura [2]

Boundary Changes

For animated maps illustrating California county boundary changes, "Rotating Formation California County Boundary Maps" (1850-1925) may be viewed for free at the website.

Records Loss

For a list of record loss in California counties see: California Counties with Burned Courthouses


Camarillo, Fillmore, Hueneme, Moorpark, Nyeland Acres, Newbury Park, Oak View, Ojai, Oxnard, Piru, Santa Paula, Simi, Somis, Thousand Oaks, Ventura


Neighboring Counties


Bible Records



[List of Ventura County cemeteries with transcriptions of a few cemeteries

  • Ronald Reagan Presidential Library, Simi Valley Has only one burial, that of Ronald Reagan, former Governor of California and former President of the United States. For the headstone, click on the 'Images' tab below the Google map, then click on the thumbnail for the image itself to view the grave and the inscriptions.



For tips on accessing Ventura County, California Genealogy census records online, see: California Census.

Church History and Records

Church records and the information they provide vary significantly depending on the denomination and the record keeper. They may contain information about members of the congregation, such as age, date of baptism, christening, or birth; marriage information and maiden names; and death date. For general information about California denominations, view the California Church Records wiki page.

LDS Ward and Branch Records

  • Ventura

Court Records

Guardianship record index,1873-1993

Crime and Criminals


Ethnic, Political, or Religious Groups





Local histories are available for Ventura County, California Genealogy. County histories may include biographies, church, school and government history, and military information. For more information about local histories, see the Wiki page section California Local Histories.

Land and Property

Land and property records can place an ancestor in a particular location, provide economic information, and reveal family relationships. Land records include: deeds, abstracts and indexes, mortgages, leases, grants and land patents.

See California Land and Property for additional information about early California land grants. After land was transferred to private ownership, subsequent transactions were usually recorded at the county courthouse and where records are currently housed.

Spanish and Mexican Land Grants in Ventura County

Index to Ventura County Deeds, 1873-1917




Military History and Records

Civil War

Regiments. Service men in Ventura County, California Genealogy served in various regiments. Men often joined a company (within a regiment) that originated in their county. Listed below are companies that were specifically formed in Ventura County, California Genealogy:

- 1st Battalion, California Native Cavalry (Union), Company A
- 1st Battalion, California Native Cavalry (Union), Company C

Naturalization and Citizenship


Additional newspapers abstracts can sometimes be found using search phrases such as Ventura County, California Genealogy newspapers in online catalogs like:



Probate Records

The county clerk is usually the custodian of probate records. The records include wills, fee books, claim registers, legacy records, inheritance records, probate ticklers, and dockets.

Content: Probate Records may give the decedent's date of death, names of his or her spouse, children, parents, siblings, in-laws, neighbors, associates, relatives, and their place of residence.

You can obtain copies of the original probate records (such as wills and estate files) by writing to the county clerk at the county courthouse.

The FamilySearch Catalog lists films of probate records. To find the records for this county, use the Place Search for California - Ventura - Probate records.


Archives, Libraries and Museums

  • Scandinavian Center. Scandinavian American Cultural and Historical Foundation at California Lutheran University. Large oral history recordings collection; many early works about Scandinavian churches in Midwest United States. See library catalog at CLU.
  • Ventura County Museum of History and Art The museum is currently closed for renovation, though a temporary exhibit space and gift shop are open on California St. The Librarian is available to answer question by phone. Once the museum is reopened the Library is an excellent research resource.

County Courthouse

County Clerk and Recorder
County Recorder's Office
Hall of Admin., Main Plaza
800 S. Victoria Ave.
Ventura, CA 93009-1260

Family History Centers



California tax records complement land records and can supplement the years between censuses. There may be gaps of several years in the tax records of some counties. For more information, see the wiki page California Taxation.

Vital Records

Vital Records consist of births, adoptions, marriages, divorces, and deaths recorded on registers, certificates, and documents. See the CDC Where to Write website for information on acquiring copies of these records. The State office has records since July 1905. For earlier records, contact the County Recorder. See also How to order California Vital Records


The County Recorder maintains records from 1873. Prior to that the Santa Barbara Recorder has the records. Ventura County Recorder fees: $14 to search and/or copy birth records.


The County Recorder maintains records from 1873. Prior to that the Santa Barbara Recorder has the records. Ventura County Recorder fees: $12 to search and/or copy marriage records.



The County Recorder maintains records from 1873. Prior to that the Santa Barbara Recorder has the records. Ventura County Recorder fees: $14 to search and/or copy of death records.

Genealogy Societies, Archives and Libraries

Web Sites


  1. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Ventura County, California. Page 88At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  2. The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).